If some bubble teams were job applicants, their resumes would be shredded faster than Donald Trump can fire a smart-mouth employee.
But this is a lousy economy when it comes to the college basketball season. The pool of candidates is made up of uneducated gum chewers who answer their cell phones during the interview process.
If a seemingly unqualified candidate shows even a little promise, it may get the call this season.
A few ugly applicants added a bright spot to their resumes in Thursday's games.
Boston College (20-11, 9-7 ACC, RPI 44, SOS 27): The Eagles have a strong strength of schedule, and a first-round ACC victory against Wake Forest keeps them alive, but they're just 1-6 against top-50 RPI teams. A win Friday against Clemson probably is necessary. Prediction: Out.
Colorado (21-12, 8-8 Big 12, RPI 67, SOS 72): The Buffaloes likely removed any lingering doubts with an 87-75 victory against Kansas State. That's three victories this season against the Wildcats, who entered the Big 12 tournament as one of the nation's hottest teams. Six victories against teams with top-50 RPIs is a stat that makes Colorado outshine other bubble teams. Prediction: In.
Georgia (21-10, 9-7 SEC, RPI 39, SOS 35): The Bulldogs rolled to a first-round SEC tournament upset of Auburn. Friday's quarterfinal game against Alabama — another bubble team — is basically a play-in game. But Georgia has some admirable qualities on its resume: a 7-4 road record and noteworthy victories against Kentucky, UAB and Tennessee. Prediction: In.
Michigan State (18-13, 9-9 Big Ten, RPI 47, SOS 7): The Spartans might be the last team in and headed for Dayton after a victory against Iowa in the first round of the Big Ten tournament. While beating Iowa won't excite the committee, beating Purdue in the second round would. Michigan State has a disappointing record, but the teams the Spartans are fighting for a final spot against are similarly bad. Prediction: In.
Penn State (17-13, 10-9 Big Ten, RPI 56, SOS 5): Beating Indiana in the first round of the conference tournament doesn't win many bonus points for Penn State. Despite a terrific strength of schedule, the Nittany Lions' 3-8 road record and loss to Maine are negatives. Defeat Wisconsin in the quarterfinals and it's a new conversation. Prediction: Out.
UAB (22-8, 12-4 C-USA, RPI 28, SOS 69): An overtime loss to East Carolina in the conference quarterfinals should be the end of the road for the Blazers. They're just 1-5 against teams in the RPI top 50, beating Virginia Commonwealth in December. Without one victory against a definite tournament team, it's hard to go to bat for UAB. Prediction: Out.
UTEP (23-10, 10-7 C-USA, RPI 63, SOS 119): UTEP's best win is arguably against a team (Memphis) that probably won't make the tournament. With an atrocious strength of schedule, the conference quarterfinal win against Marshall doesn't mean much. The Miners need to win the conference tournament to get in. Prediction: Out.
USC (19-13, 10-8 Pac-10, RPI 70, SOS 43): The Trojans destroyed fellow bubble opponent Cal 70-56 in the conference quarterfinals. Stacked on top of victories against Texas, Arizona, UCLA, Tennessee and Washington, USC will be hard to keep out of the tournament. Prediction: In.
It doesn't take much for bubble teams to help cause
Colorado, Georgia, Michigan State, USC looking good; Boston College, UAB on the outs
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